Friday, July 2, 2010

2,300 sq. ft.

Neat column in the New York Times about the growing size of the typical American home. Nowadays the average square footage is 2,300. During the baby boom it was less than 1,000.

In this we might see the boiled frog phenomenon at work. As a society, we've had a creeping shift in expectations for what a house should be. The square footage is an indicator of this, but the shift is also about expectations for privacy, for how to use the outside space, and what electronic amenities we need as well. And, perhaps, we find ourselves in this stalled economic state today because we have hit the law of diminishing marginal returns with housing. There's just not much more we as a society can buy regarding our homes. Pretty soon we'll run out of demand for digital tv services, patio furniture, and central AC.

No comments: